You are going out of town and your dog can’t come with you. Out of the available dog kennels, how do you pick the best one?
Dog kennels are a great option for travelers. Traveling can put a lot of unnecessary stress on your pet, from changing locations to uncomfortable spaces. Dog kennels can offer your pet safety and comfort, and offer you some piece of mind. Even though you may think it would be better to keep your dog with friends, if they work during the day, they might not be able to offer your pet the amount of attention that quality dog kennels can.
The choices range from a basic indoor dog kennel to a luxury pet hotel and everything in-between. First, check with friends, the local humane society, or your veterinarian for dog kennel recommendations. Local pet friendly message boards and online groups can also be excellent sources of recommendations for dog kennels. After you get several quality options in mind, the legwork of finding the right dog kennel can begin.
Obviously, when looking at potential dog kennels, the first step of action is to request a tour. The biggest drawback to dog kennels is the number of other animals your pet will be exposed to, and the potential illnesses that can be caught from the environment. Does each animal have its own space? How large is the space? How clean is the space? How many other animals are staying at that particular kennel? These questions offer you quantitative information you can use while comparing kennels.
Always ask questions of the staff of the dog kennels you are looking at. What are the exercise schedules? How many staff members are working in relation to the number of animals at the dog kennel? What food are they providing? Is there a medical expert on staff or is there readily available access to a veterinarian?
There are several resources you can use to check the quality of the dog kennels you are considering. Many states require inspections of dog kennels; is the license or certificate prominently displayed? Is the dog kennel a member of the American Boarding Kennels Association? This trade association founded by dog kennel operators requires members to subscribe to a code of ethics, and also offers voluntary facility accreditation for dog kennels. Also check with your local Better Business Bureau to see if any complaints have been filed against the dog kennel.
After you have chosen a dog kennel, there are some simple things you need to do to ensure a quality stay. Make sure your pet is up to date on vaccinations, and you leave any necessary medication with the dog kennel staff. Brief the staff about your dog’s personality and specific needs. Lastly, leave some familiar objects for your pet, such as a special toy, blanket, or bag of favorite treats.
If you’ve done your research of dog kennels, you will return from your trip to be greeted by a healthy, happy pet, but one who is still overjoyed to see you again.